WD Poetic Form Challenge: Lai Winner

Author:
Publish date:

I had some reservations about attacking the lai, because of the short lines and repetitive rhymes. I was worried the poems might be too stilted, but as usual, I was pleasantly surprised by the variation of topics and tactics for wrangling with this nine-line French form. Great job to everyone who participated!

As usual, picking a winner was a real battle, but I'm happy with the result. I think "Left," by Amy Glamos, provides some interesting ambiguity that left me wondering as much about what wasn't said as what was. Plus, I just love the "sharply bladed" rhyme. Excellent piece.

Left, by Amy Glamos

Your note has faded,
the cursive shaded
dull grey;
words sharply bladed,
but still I waited
that day;
can't help the jaded
thoughts that pervaded
foul play.

*****

Receive feedback on your poetry!

Get the feedback on your poetry that can help take your poems in new directions. If you’re stuck in a rut, taking the Advanced Poetry Writing course online–from the comfort of your home–could be just what the doctor ordered.

Click to continue.

*****

Congratulations to Amy for claiming the top spot, but every poem that made the top 10 (and quite a few that didn’t) is a great read.

Here’s the top 10 list:

  1. Left, by Amy Glamos
  2. Drive-thru Life, by Bruce Niedt
  3. Limited Application, by Jane Shlensky
  4. Kermit and the Pig, by Joseph Phillip Walters (Jeep Walters)
  5. Summer-Camper, by Taylor Graham
  6. Trapped, by Tracy Davidson
  7. Moonrise Due East, by Daniel Ari
  8. Rusty Rails, by William Preston
  9. Indiscretions, by Walt Wojtanik
  10. Love Unanswered, by Marie Elena Good

Congratulations to everyone who made the Top 10 list!

And thank you to everyone who wrote and shared their lais. I read through every poem at least once to make a short list. Then, I go through the short list several times to whittle it down to the top 10. Click here to read them all.

Also, check out the current challenge for the somonka. Click to continue.

*****

Robert Lee Brewer

Robert Lee Brewer

Robert Lee Brewer is Senior Content Editor of the Writer's Digest Writing Community and a poet still struggling to write a satisfactory lai (don't worry: it'll come). He's also the author of Solving the World's Problems (Press 53), a collection of poems that contains no lais, though it does have a former monotetra with the refrain removed. He's married to the poet Tammy Foster Brewer, who helps him keep track of their five little poets (four boys and one princess). Follow him on Twitter @robertleebrewer.

*****

Check out other poetic posts here:

Batra&DeCandido_1:18

Dr. Munish Batra and Keith R.A. DeCandido: Entertainment and Outrage

Authors Dr. Munish Batra and Keith R.A. DeCandido explain how they came to co-write their novel and why it's important to them that the readers experience outrage while reading.

incite_vs_insight_grammar_rules_robert_lee_brewer

Incite vs. Insight (Grammar Rules)

Learn when to use incite vs. insight with Grammar Rules from the Writer's Digest editors, including a few examples of correct usages.

Cleland_1:17

Jane K. Cleland: On Writing the Successful Long-Running Series

Award-winning mystery author Jane K. Cleland describes what it's like to write a long-running book series and offers expert advice for the genre writer.

writer's digest wd presents

WD Presents: #StartWrite, Virtual Conference, and New Courses

This week, we’re excited to announce free resources to start your writing year off well, our Novel Writing Virtual Conference, and more!

20_most_popular_writing_posts_of_2020_robert_lee_brewer

20 Most Popular Writing Posts of 2020

We share a lot of writing-related posts throughout the year on the Writer's Digest website. In this post, we've collected the 20 most popular writing posts of 2020.

Malden_1:16

Carla Malden: Writing With Optimism and Innocence

Screenwriter and author Carla Malden explains why young adult fiction and the '60s go hand-in-hand and how she connected with her main character's voice.

writing_mistakes_writers_make_talking_about_the_work_in_progress_robert_lee_brewer

Writing Mistakes Writers Make: Talking About the Work-in-Progress

The Writer's Digest team has witnessed many writing mistakes over the years, so we started this series to help identify them for other writers (along with correction strategies). This week's writing mistake writers make is talking about the work-in-progress.

Kelly_1:15

Greta K. Kelly: Publishing Is a Marathon

Debut author Greta K. Kelly reveals how the idea for her novel sparked and the biggest surprise of her publication journey.

Poetic Forms

Mistress Bradstreet Stanza: Poetic Forms

Poetic Form Fridays are made to share various poetic forms. This week, we look at the Mistress Bradstreet stanza, an invented form of John Berryman.